The holiday season will most likely consist of you heading home or going on vacation with your family. Meaning, you will probably have some much needed free time to just sit back, relax, and do whatever your heart desires. Instead of spending hours watching Netflix or your parent’s Direct TV, pick up a book and broaden your horizons, I mean I know were on vacation but that’s no reason to let your brain rot in front of the TV/ your computer screen. After months of studying, working, or maybe both, it can be hard to find the time to sit down and enjoy a book. And if you’re a student, I know the last thing you want to do after cramming for a test is to read more. Well now you have the time! If you have no idea what to read, here are 5 recommendations that will hopefully satisfy whatever you are looking for in your holiday downtime.
The Lazarus Project- Aleksandar Hermon
So, I just finished this book, and it was definitely a page-turner. I randomly picked it up at Half- Price Books when I remembered a review I had read about it in The New York Times a few years ago. The story takes place in Chicago and Bosnia, in two different time periods, the early 2000’s and early 1900’s. Two different stories, and one mystery to be solved. The main character/narrator Vladimir Brik finds himself so wrapped up in a murder from the past, that his life soon becomes intertwined with Lazarus Averbuch, the young Jewish immigrant who was shot and killed by the Chicago chief of police in 1908. I don’t want to give too much away, but this is an excellent book to read if you love mysteries, suspense, and even history.
The Great Gatsby- F. Scott Fitzgerald
If you happened to be living a rock for the last 7 months, you missed the memo that The Great Gatsby has been made into a movie starring the love of my life, Leonardo DiCaprio. And Carey Mulligan, and Tobey Maguire, but we all know who will be in the spotlight. Although the release date was pushed to May and I’m super bummed, there is a silver lining. This gives all of us Fitzgerald fans time to (re) read the classic novel in preparation for the film debut. If you read it in high school, I encourage you to give it another shot, I promise you’ll have a different perspective on the characters and plot. For example, in high school I didn’t care about any of the characters (I was apathetic towards everything in general actually) but now I recognize how much of a bitch Daisy is, and how submissive Gatsby is. Anyways, it’s a short read and a classic, what more do you want out of a book?
White Girl Problems- Babe Walker
Okay speaking of bitchy characters, Babe Walker is my ultimate favorite. This is the shallowest, funniest, and emptiest book I have ever read. I admit, I was sort of embarrassed to be reading it, but I soon forgot about that when I found myself sneaking my Kindle out at work. I literally could not put it down, and finished it within a day. Read this if you want a mental vacation, but not necessarily one in front of the TV.
House Of Leaves- Mark Z. Danielewski
This is what I plan on reading over the break. One of our writers on TTV read this over the summer and told me it was amazing. Although I cant really tell you what it is about, I’m excited to finally have the time to read it. Apparently, the book is considered to be a horror story, so I’m excited to see what all the hype is about.
The Angels Game- Carlos Ruiz Zafón
I read this a few years ago over the holiday season, which is why I am suggesting it now. This book was originally written in Spanish, but the English translation is so beautiful, I can only imagine how amazing the writing is originally. The Angel’s Games is the 1st book of Zafón’s trilogy, but was written after the 2nd book, Shadow of the Wind, was released. I highly recommend you read the trilogy, but The Angel’s Game was definitely my favorite. The story takes place in Barcelona in the 1920’s, and is a mystery, thriller, and love story all wrapped up into one phenomenal book. It is one of my favorites because the writing, the story, and the characters are all so original. It’s refreshing to read a book in which the author is clearly so passionate about everything entailed in the story. Zafón has a brilliant imagination and is talented beyond words, and I honestly think everyone should take the time to read his work; you will not be disappointed.